Monday, September 27, 2010

Multigenerational Toys

There's just something special about watching your kids play with your childhood toys. It's like time stopped for a second, and you feel like a child and a mother in the same moment.

During our Summer trip to Texas, Daniel spent the majority of his indoor time playing with my Care Bear collection and an old color/shape/key puzzle. It was so sweet to watch.

I guess there's something to be said for toys that last that long, that well. And for parents (thanks Mom!) who care enough to keep their kids' toys for their grandkids to use.

Daniel and the Bean Stalk

Turns out Daniel might have a green thumb.

This would be a miracle, given the absolute lack of a green thumb in either one of his parents.

His teacher recently said that Daniel has been extremely interested in the gardening project they are doing in their preschool classroom. They have been planting pinto beans and watching them sprout, observing their growth each day. She gave Daniel a magnifying glass and he spent at least 20 minutes just analyzing the little sprouts.

At the end of the assignment, she had some extra plants, so they came home with Daniel.

I will admit: Fear struck my heart as soon as I heard this. No plant stands a chance in our home. This was destined for disaster.

And the plants DID die. But it took a while. And Daniel seemed ok with the whole "say bye-bye to the plants" bit. But before the inevitable end, they grew well and Daniel loved waking up every morning and "checking on" them and giving them water.

It's fun to see new interests and hobbies springing up in him... I just hope this is a passing phase. It would never work in our home.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Big Brother Extraordinaire

No seriously, he IS the best big brother ever. Which doesn't mean that he doesn't occasionally hit/push/trip/and otherwise irritate his sister. I think that's a perfectly normal (and even necessary) part of being a brother.

The part that blows me away is how she is ALWAYS on his mind. When I pick him up from daycare he immediately runs to her, "Violet! It's my sister!" and procedes to re-introduce his friends/teachers/sometimes parents to his little sister.

And recently he's kind of assumed the role of "Violet thought translator to the parents". For example: If he is asking to color a picture of an animal, he tells us, "I want to color an elephant and Violet wants to color a donkey." (Granted, hers is always the less-cool of the animals... but still.) Or if she is crying, he will tell us that she needs her agua or a snack.

One of my favorite times of day is after dinner when Fernando and I are cleaning up, Daniel and Violet will usually disappear into one of their rooms, playing contentedly. He reads her books. He shows her his toys. He loves to make her laugh. He wrestles and tickles her (often to a "break it up!" place).

My favorite is when he chases her around the house, throws himself on his knees and throws his arms open, "Violet! Nay! Give me hug, Violet!" ("Nay" means "come here" in Ahmaric.) Half the time she obliges, and half the time he gets the shaft... but it is still sweet to see his efforts.

He really, truly loves her.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Elephant Night

The first of many family fun nights (henceforth known as Fam Jams!)... we celebrated "Elephant Night" tonight.

I think it was international elephant day or something... but for whatever reason we just decided to have a fun elephant-themed evening.

We ate elephant food. We played elephant games. We stomped in chalk elephant foot prints. We sprayed each other with our trunks (straws) at the watering hole (tupperware full of water). We played with all of our elephant toys. We all wore elephant colors = gray. We tried to watch Horton Hears a Hoo... but the disc didn't work. Elephant night ended a little early.

BUT it was so much fun!