Ugh, I have NO notes on Vivienne!  She continues to struggle to grow in staying calm and in control, but is wonderfully generous and thoughtful when she is “herself.”  She enjoying drawing, painting, dancing, and playing with others.


She loves sitting next to Ellie at meals so she can feed and take care of her.


For project time she often wants to bake, and she always wants to do things with me.


She’s letting her hair grow out (I think that means no more cutting her own hair – phew!) and is patient enough to let me put it in ponytails or I even braided her hair once.  Wow, we have a little girl!

Posted by harp on Friday, July 22, 2016 at 1:19 pm | Edit
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So none of my children managed to walk before 13 months, not that it matters, I’m just sayin’ . . . she will take a few steps every few days but she is in no hurry.  I think it’s because she’s afraid of some overenthusiastic sibling pushing her over . . .


All of my notes for this month have to do with her mouth.  She got her last incisor (lower left) and two upper molars this month.


Ellie says “ciao ciao” and “good night” quite clearly in context.


That’s the end of my notes, but in general she is quite communicative.  She’s started signing “please” and “finished” at meals and I really have to get my act together or none of my kids will have learned baby sign despite having minored in sign language in college.  I am working through my guilt of not having a second chance to give at least one of my babies all the opportunities I imagined I would before actually becoming a parent . . .


The biggest change this month is that we night-weaned Ellie (using this helpful article as a starting point, for those who’ve asked me).  She was ready for it, hardly complaining at all (a few 10 minutes cry sessions was it).  She never want to go to bed or back to bed, but if I calmly show her it isn’t time to get up and nurse she cries less than a minute before falling asleep again.  I am beside myself with excitement having the bed to myself for the time being.  (Stephan is still sleeping with the older kids . . .)  I have more energy for the kids when they sleep at night, so we’re all enjoying the changes.  Still, it’s weird to think that the baby stage is nearly over – it was SO intense it felt like it was a permanent sentence!


But this is about Ellie, not me. ;)  She is no longer deathly afraid of the water – she even walked through the shallow pool holding my hands.  She loves playing at the sink while I cook.


She’s still a happy and charming little girl.

Posted by harp on Thursday, July 21, 2016 at 2:37 pm | Edit
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This is Daniel’s last month of being a two-year-old.  I love two-year-olds!  Aside from the toilet needs (he’s actually mostly dry at night but is too busy playing during the day to always make it on time), it’s such a delightful age of discovery and growing ability.  He uses the workspace tools alongside the others and mostly knows not to draw or cut furniture and clothing . . .


He is quite able in communication, using full sentences in German and English (no High German yet).  He is usually easy to understand despite using “t” for “k” and some other consonant replacements.  It makes “trying” and “crying” sound the same, but context is usually enough.  He speaks deliberately, which is more like Joseph at that age than Vivienne, our prattler.


What is super sweet is how much he and Ellie get along.  When Ellie wakes up she can’t wait to wake up her “dada” and Daniel responds well to her climbing on him as a wake-up.  They smile and coo and laugh and it’s the sweetest picture in the world.  Often Daniel claims Ellie is saying something that we haven’t noticed, like “Ellie said thanks.”


Whenever the weather has been warm enough Daniel likes to splash in the kiddie pool with Vivienne.


He’s starting to lose his afternoon nap, or I don’t have the patience to make him do it.  I’ve started telling the older three they can go where they please during “independent time” but they have to stay quiet, and I retreat to my bedroom for a little rest and down time.  It works fairly well and at least I get some rest before they need me again.  One of Daniel’s favorite things to do in this time is play Mommy and kid with Vivienne in the attic.  Often Daniel is the mommy.


He likes running around, wresting, kicking and throwing balls, and playing with cars.


Argh, again my notes are pathetic.



He calls his bathing suit a “babing soup.”



He watches and learns from everything around him.  Joseph has being learning about American money on games and later when Joseph said he wanted to earn a 20 Franc bill he looked at me seriously and said “I want 10 Francs and a dime.”


He is irresistibly cute with his cubby red cheeks and comic manner.  He has a slight tendency toward being spoiled, but he’s much better than he was during Grandma and Dad-o’s visit because we are more aware of how he can charm everyone and get away with stuff.  The challenges of parenting never go away, do they?

Posted by harp on Saturday, July 16, 2016 at 9:41 pm | Edit
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